[b-hebrew] Ex Pu'ah

MarianneLuban at aol.com MarianneLuban at aol.com
Tue Aug 24 18:04:19 EDT 2004

In a message dated 8/24/2004 2:41:51 PM Pacific Daylight Time, 
patrina at bestmail.us writes:

> Marianne, I'd be interested to know - what is the Egyptian meaning of 
> Puah?

I can't provide the answer.  My Hertz Pentateuch says that the names "Shifra 
and Pu'ah" are probably Egyptian.  Others think they are Semitic.  Shifra, as 
I mentioned previously, is among the name of foreigners given on the Brooklyn 
papyrus.  So I don't doubt that one is Semitic.  "Swordsearcher" gives the 
name "Pu'ah" as meaning "splendid".   An old Bible dictionary I have here has 
Shifra as meaning "handsome" and Pu'ah as "mouth".  So there is not much 
consensus.  Unfortunately, the Biblical forms of Egyptian names are not always easily 
identifiable.  For many years, people have been struggling to figure out the 
Egyptian name that pharaoh called Joseph.  Recently, I came up with one where 
the Egyptian fits to all the Hebrew letters--and to the rabbinic legends, as 
well.  In fact, it was those very commentaries that gave me the clue as to the 
actual meaning of the epithet.  And an epithet it must be--and no actual name.  
I'll tell that story in another email.

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